Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Filonian and Proud of it


Some 20 yrs ago a local politician rather ranted on the steps of the then Polling station about being a Filonian and knowing what was best for Filey. He boasted that he had  always lived and worked in Filey.
I have just spent time in my birthplace and rather liked it. I couldn't wait to leave it when I was 18, and have never returned to live there. I know Kingston upon Hull very well however, as I still have family in my once village , now suburb, Sutton in Holderness. 
Anybody my age who grew up in my  city on the east Coast grew up when much of the place was being very quickly regenerated after it had been hugely razed to the ground by bombing raids in WW2. Filey by contrast suffered little from sustained enemy action.  
In Kingston upon Hull the population still all sounded Hull  to me. Our local Hullspeak  differs even from the Fileyspeak of only 30 miles away. I am no Henry Higgins, but I could once discern a  Hull accent across a crowded London Bus. When I was young and living and working in London I used to ask complete stangers on the Tube or bus  about Hull. I longed to hear the sound of home sometimes.
Years on and I would struggle to hear a Northern Accent across a carriage,or even the English language, everyone is speaking, BUT the languages are as diverse and fascinating  as the population of London now is.
So I look again at the familiar words from the Pentecost narrative

Acts 2,5-11 (The Message)
There were many Jews staying in Jerusalem just then, devout pilgrims from all over the world. When they heard the sound, they came on the run. Then when they heard, one after another, their own mother tongues being spoken, they were thunderstruck. They couldn’t for the life of them figure out what was going on, and kept saying, “Aren’t these all Galileans? How come we’re hearing them talk in our various mother tongues?
Parthians, Medes, and Elamites;
Visitors from Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia,
Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia,
Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene;
Immigrants from Rome, both Jews and proselytes;
Even Cretans and Arabs!

“They’re speaking our languages, describing God’s mighty works!”

It has always puzzled me.Not the fact that  the Jews were praising God, not the fact that a Jews from away heard their own speak, but what happened after that?

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I have read of instances when people speaking in tongues have been understood  by foreigners. I have often wondered what would happen on a London Bus if those with the gift of tongues would speak out and see what happened. Not Biblical I know, as we are told not to speak out in public unless we know someone is there to interpret. (1 Corinthians 14). I need some teachingon the subject. I was not able to worship at a church on Pentecost Sunday, we were at Craft Central Clerkenwell supporting our son as he was selling his felt  art bears. We heard the service on BBC radio 4. It was from Manchester and was very good but we didnt have any teaching.
 I dont know what Andrew preached about last Sunday. BUT  I do know that those  in our homegroup are yearning for some teaching.  

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